Size doesn't always overcome technique, but it sure helps.
In the latest only-in-Japan booking, fight officials pitted heavyweight star Fedor Emelianenko vs. lightweight stand-out Shinya Aoki in an "exhibition sparring match" that took place today.
The bout, which resembled more of a grappling session, ended when Aoki tapped out to his much-larger opponent.
The exhibition was part of Wednesday's Deep/M-1 Challenge event at the Differ Ariake Arena in Tokyo, Japan. However, because of existing broadcast deals in the U.S., fight officials ultimately decided to black out the Emelianenko vs. Aoki matchup from telecasts worldwide. (However, M-1 will make the fight available online for free beginning May 4.)
Emelianenko easily man-handled his opponent and suplexed him to the mat, according to a report from Sportsnavi.com, though a friendly tone accompanied the match. Emelianenko reportedly would give up a submission attempt to try another and even allowed Aoki to slap on a hold so he could power his way free. Aoki ultimately tapped out from an Achilles lock three minutes into the scheduled five-minute fight.
Because the matchup was an exhibition, neither fighter's record will be affected by the bout.
Emelianenko and Aoki, who both hold WAMMA world titles in their respective weight classes, are two of the most popular fighters in Japan.
Emelianenko, a World Combat Sambo champion who will compete in the Abu Dhabi Combat Club's submission fighting championships later this year, last competed in January when he defeated former UFC champ Andrei Arlovski at Affliction's "Day of Reckoning" show. As MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com
) recently reported, his next MMA fight could come this summer in Japan as part of a rumored Affliction/M-1/DREAM card.